Prowlers Explode In Third, Sweep Ice Breakers 7-3
By: Brady Beedon
The Mentor Ice Breakers played the Port Huron Prowlers tough for forty minutes Saturday night.
However, it would be the final frame that proved fatal, as Port Huron netted four goals, en route to a 7-3 victory.
The Prowlers Matt Graham got the scoring going early, springing a breakaway while on the penalty kill, then finishing a backhanded shot to give Port Huron an early 1-0 lead.
Later in the period, it would be the hottest Ice Breaker, Steven Fowler, who would tie the game at one a side.
Justin Portillo would net his second goal in as many nights, as he beat goaltender Kent Nusbaum on the far side, taking the score into the locker room 2-1 in favor of the visiting Prowlers.
The Prowlers would score first out of the break, as Austin Weber netted his first career goal, putting in a rebound between the legs of Nusbaum.
It would be all Mentor the rest of the period however, as both Alfonzo Diaz and Fowler would score within minutes of each other.
The Prowlers and Ice Breakers were tied at three a side after 40 minutes of play.
But the Prowlers saved their best for last, as they exploded in the third and final period.
The scoring started early, thanks in part to a powerplay that carried over from the previous period. Graham tipped in a shot perfectly from Matt Rupert, regaining the Port Huron lead.
It was a lead they wouldn’t give up.
A pair of hustle goals from Jonathon Juliano and Zach Zulkanycz had the Prowlers doubling up the Ice Breakers 6-3.
With minutes to go, Sage Centrone was able to beat Nusbaum, and score his first professional goal.
The win secured a sweep of the weekend, and finalized a season series with Mentor with a 9-1-0-0 victory.
“It felt good to get that monkey off my back,” said Weber on scoring his first goal. “I’ve had close shots this whole season. Finally, a nice five hole goal.”
Both of Weber’s linemates, Portillo and Cetrone, were able to score in the contest.
“Our cycle game is good,” said Weber. “We pick up the pace, the other team scrambles around, get pucks to the defense, get traffic in front. I think that’s why we are doing it.”
Graham was able to score both shorthanded and on the man advantage on Saturday.
“Our Powerplay has been clicking all year,” said Graham. “It’s a lot different than the last two years. We simplified things, we are getting more pucks to the net.”
Graham and the Prowlers will be on the road next weekend, playing two games against the Watertown Wolves, and a single game against the Battle Creek Rumble Bees.